The New Age Movement (NAM) has been very successful at infiltrating our society. Its principles, beliefs, and practices are everywhere: In business, entertainment, sports, health, schools, our homes, and even the evangelical church. New Age authors and leaders such as Louise Hay, Deepak Chopra and Wayne Dyer (who died in August 2015), and countless others, have been seducing and lying to Christians for decades. Unsuspecting believers assume these authors are merely dishing out solid advice on good health or spiritual matters; however, a true Berean would quickly point out that these deceivers’ teachings are not scriptural at all.
Before I address the witnessing aspect, it’s important to understand the views of this movement. I have kept it brief; however, since its teachings encompass a variety of philosophies, religions, and practices, I’ve supplied links below the article, should you want to learn more.
What is the New Age Movement and what are Its Views?
The Age of Aquarius is the belief that Earth is moving into an astronomical age in which we will realize that man is God, or that God is within. As we know, the idea of self-deification isn’t new–it goes back to the Garden of Eden and has been haunting us ever since.
When I was a New Ager, I viewed Christians as having good intentions, but scoring low on the “spiritual totem pole”. I saw Christians’ rules and lifestyle, but to me, those things were not spirituality; I assumed Christians would ascend higher through incarnations (a series of future lifetimes). I viewed the Bible as one of many holy books, but I never read it, as I didn’t think it would contain any helpful guidance on attaining ‘enlightenment’.
Because those in the New Age Movement like to redefine words and concepts, or try not be “limited” by them, it can be difficult trying to reason with them–the postmodern views that “there is no such thing as absolute truth”, and that “what is true for you is not true for me” apply. Additionally, clouding their minds is the belief that all religions lead to enlightenment, as we are all on our own paths.
The NAM’s View of God
Monism (the belief that everything is one) and pantheism (a universal force that is god) are two prominent views of “god”. I believed the universal force was sovereign, but that everything in existence was a part of it. Beliefs are very fluid and subjective in the NAM; regardless, the “Divine” is an impersonal force. New Age techniques are used to attain a “high vibration” and to raise one’s consciousness to attain true oneness with this force. Feelings of joy, awe, excitement, and peace are common, which only reinforce the belief that the NAM practitioner has found “truth”.
The NAM’s View of Jesus
Jesus is viewed as a man who attained spiritual enlightenment through New Age/occult practices, just as Buddha and Zoroaster did. In their view, Jesus is not Christ or king.
The NAM’s View of Salvation
The NAM dictates that man is busy evolving towards godhood through reincarnation. Since people pay for the actions of their previous lives (incarnation), this aspect of the NAM is a futile and works-based religion.
Witnessing to New Agers
This is a spiritual battle, and the real enemy is Satan and not the people you are witnessing to (Ephesians 6:12-13). Pray that God would allow them to see the light of the Gospel that the god of this world has blinded them to (2 Corinthians 4:4), also pray that God would grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth (2 Timothy 2:25).
2. Be Gentle While Tackling New Agers’ Arguments
New Agers are just people, and they don’t all share the same views. So ask specific questions about what and why they believe. For instance, ask the following: “What do you think about the reality of human evil?” New Age thinking lacks an objective moral basis, since everyone creates his or her own moral reality. If you were to punch a New Ager in the face (which I’m not advocating), that unfortunate person would surely view that punch as wrong. Christianity offers an objective moral reality that the NAM viewpoint doesn’t.
Concerning the Christian’s supernatural, heavenly weapons that are able to demolish strongholds (2 Corinthians 10:4-5), Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary has this to say:
The work of the ministry is a spiritual warfare with spiritual enemies, and for spiritual purposes. Outward force is not the method of the gospel, but strong persuasions, by the power of truth and the meekness of wisdom. Conscience is accountable to God only; and people must be persuaded to God and their duty, not driven by force. Thus the weapons of our warfare are very powerful; the evidence of truth is convincing. What opposition is made against the gospel, by the powers of sin and Satan in the hearts of men! But observe the conquest the word of God gains. The appointed means, however feeble they appear to some, will be mighty through God. And the preaching of the cross, by men of faith and prayer, has always been fatal to idolatry, impiety, and wickedness.”
Yes! Regarding arguments the preaching of the cross is “fatal” as “The Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit…able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).”
3. Explain Their Need to Be Saved From God’s Wrath (Share the Gospel)
Telling New Agers that they have “sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” will mean nothing to them (the same way that statement would mean nothing to atheists or agnostics). When people believe they have the spark of “Divinity” within, they believe that they are the glory and so “sin” is just another guilt-tripping Christian word.
Gently explain to them that right and wrong exist; we–all people–know that because God has given each of us a conscience and His moral law. We’ve all broken that law, thereby deserving His punishment. Share the Gospel; if you missed my post a few weeks ago, Hell’s Best Kept Secret is a great model for revealing sin and sharing the Gospel.
I hope that by taking some of the mystery out of this movement, you are able to see it’s just another works-based religion–with occult techniques thrown in the mix–that leads to eternal separation from God. The world’s religions claim that man is innately good and can earn his/her way to heaven through good works or through the realization of his/her own godlike status. Christianity teaches the opposite: we need to recognize our sinfulness and our need for salvation through the grace (Jesus) that God has provided, and not by works, so that no one can boast (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Soli Deo Gloria